Ikea-Induced Hysteria

The particle board splinters.

My rough touch is too much

for what I can afford.

This thing is precious to me

in its necessity

&now its cracks

spread across my ribs;

(I plea with myself,

it’s just a shelf,

it’s just a shelf.)

parts without places

scattered on the floor.

someone else is crying

inside my body. I live

as the lost pegs

under the dresser

drawer, lying

to my dust bunny confessor.

how much money can I waste

on my mistakes?

(it’s just a shelf,

it’s just a shelf,

smother your heartaches)

I am not the sort of person

that lasts—

neither icon nor iconoclast.

when I die I will be buried

in my particle board

coffin, missing

at least one cam lock part

(It’s just a shelf,

it’s just a shelf,)

Kitsch-filled heart,

please entertain me while I

fall apart, while my clumsy fingers

snap off veins &my skin oil

stains. I am not

a teak & amber kid.

(it’s just a shelf,

it‘s just a shelf,)

I won’t endure,

I never did.

I can’t make this house a home—

scratch the floors

& dent the walls,

plywood bent and warped

in its storage bin.

do I commit the sin

of giving up (again)

(it’s just a—)

someone’s tears wet my face

but I watch from the empty space

between the floorboards

so close to unseen

& so unclean, let my

loose screws fall,

collapse it all.

Again, I have to tell myself—

“It’s just a shelf,

It’s just a shelf.”

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